As summer fades slowly into fall.

corn_fieldsThis summer, I’ve had the chance to watch my rambunctious nephews–my sister’s sons, aged 3 and 6–a few of times, so that she and her husband can spend some one-on-one time.  She’s watched my kids a few times as well, so Chris and I can have date nights. As much as I’ve enjoyed the date nights, I’ve also enjoyed having the boys over.

Our house is remarkably balanced on the estrogen-testosterone front, with a nice two-to-two ratio of boys to girls.  My youngest sister has two daughters under the age of 5, and middle sis has the two boys.  So it’s always interesting to experience what it’s like when one gender’s got all the momentum in a family.

One of my intentions this summer has been to be a better sister and aunt, to try to fill in some of the gaps left by the passing of my mom and my maternal grandparents.

I loved going to stay with my grandparents as a kid.  There was a rhythm to my granny’s busy life that offered routine and structure, but wasn’t rigid.  it followed a pattern, but wasn’t locked unforgivingly in it.  Mom’s life as a full-time homemaker had a similar pace and rhythm.

If there is a rhythm to my life, particularly right now, it’s the chaotic staccato of an air hockey puck bouncing off the sides of the table.

Earlier in the summer, I took my kids and nephews out to pick the raspberries that grow on our fence line.  Berry-picking with kids is one of those activities that fit into my mom’s and granny’s routine, but has been pretty absent from mine.

This week, the kids start back to school.  Next week, I’ll start back to school, for the first time in over 15 years.  Summer vacation is drawing to a close.

But I want to take with me into the Fall this idea of life having rhythm and routine.  Of finding a pace that doesn’t leave me completely breathless.  Of taking time to stop, breathe, enjoy the people and vistas around me.  I want to continue living out my intentions for being more present in the lives of my loved ones.

What are your intentions for the Fall?  What does the rhythm of your life feel like right now?  What do you think you could do to slow it down (or speed it up)?

img courtesy sxc

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